NJ broker turns to Gino Wickman’s book to help guide its strategic planning

Matt Rand was about halfway through Gino Wickman’s book Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business before realizing that the author was the son of real estate coach Floyd Wickman. Focused on strategic business planning and holding team members accountable, Traction was soon playing a key role in Nanuet, NY-based Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty’s business model.

traction

“We discovered the book when our marketing team went to a HubSpot conference and heard Gino speak,” says Rand, managing partner, whose company has 1,000 agents and 26 offices. “I loved it as soon as I read it.”

Here are three ways BHG Rand Realty uses the book for strategic planning:

  1. Develop an accountability chart. Wickman’s version of an organizational chart, the accountability chart, provides clarity about who owns the major functions of a company and identifies those individuals’ primary roles and responsibilities (whereas organizational charts center on who reports to who). Built around job descriptions and/or a hierarchy of positioning, the accountability chart help BHG Rand shift job responsibilities and “look at the business from the outside perspective,” says Rand, “and more thoughtfully organize ourselves in our positions.”
  2. Get family members on the same page. The company was founded by Rand’s mother, who used to joke that she raised “all chiefs and no Indians” in her family. “Planning and holding one another accountable is difficult in a family business,” Rand admits. The book helped the firm’s leaders create structure and develop matrix for getting more organized, taking the stress out of business ownership, and focusing on what’s most important. “’Let’s all read the book and follow it exactly as it’s written,’” Rand told team members, “’instead of trying to reinvent everything and do it our own way.’”
  3. Develop one-, three- and 10-year strategic plans. After reading the book, the team developed its core values; mission statement; and one-, three-, and 10-year plans. Then, it followed through on those processes. “It was a really good experience to go through, without having to bring in an outside consultant to help,” Rand says. “On our own, we put together a very solid, long-term plan in a more organized fashion than we’d ever done in the past.”

Three years after implementing the principles laid out in Traction, BHG Rand Realty has seen the rewards of better prioritization and accountability. “We had our best years in business ever over the last three years; each was the ‘best year’ in the company’s history,” says Rand. “It helps us stay focused, with the structure and methodology keeping us centered and on track in ways we never thought of before.”

By Bridget McCrea